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Frontiers in Cardiovascular Medicine

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Aim: We performed a systematic review and meta-analysis to investigate the effects of high-intensity interval training (HIIT) compared with moderateintensity continuous training (MICT) or with no exercise (CON) on vascular function in adults who were free of cardiometabolic diseases and those with cardiometabolic diseases.

Methods: A search across three electronic databases including Scopus, PubMed, and Web of Science was conducted through February 2022 to identify the randomized trials evaluating HIIT vs. MICT and/or CON on vascular function as measured using brachial artery flow-mediated dilation (FMD) in adults. Separate analyses were conducted for HIIT vs. MICT and/or CON to calculate weighted mean differences (WMD) and 95% confidence intervals (95% CIs) using random or fixed models.

Results: A total of 36 studies involving 1,437 participants who were either free of cardiometabolic diseases or had cardiometabolic diseases were included in the meta-analysis. HIIT effectively increased FMD when compared with MICT [1.59% (95% CI 0.87–2.31), p = 0.001] or CON [3.80% (95% CI 2.58–5.01), p = 0.001]. Subgroup analysis showed that HIIT increased FMD in participants with cardiovascular and metabolic diseases, but not in participants who were free of cardiometabolic diseases. In addition, HIIT effectively increased FMD regardless of age and body mass index.

Conclusion: We confirm that HIIT is effective for improving vascular function in individuals with metabolic disorders and cardiovascular diseases and has a superior effect compared to MICT, demonstrating time efficiency.

Systematic review registration: [], identifier [CRD42022320863].


High-intensity interval training; Moderate-intensity continuous training; Vascular function; Cardiovascular diseases; Metabolic disorders


Biochemical Phenomena, Metabolism, and Nutrition | Cardiovascular Diseases | Endocrinology, Diabetes, and Metabolism

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